Fairy Tales of New York was described by Kenneth Tynan in the Observer in 1961 as ‘A chain of theatrical pearls, nourished by a master of comic dialogue’. The four acts chronicle a series of events in the life of Irish American Cornelius Christian beginning from his arrival in New York with the coffin bearing his dead wife, Helen through to his reunion with his childhood sweetheart, Charlotte Graves. Cornelius is a complicated character, who is by turns, capricious, ingenuous, manipulative and opportunistic. Always motivated by money he uses his wit, charm, humour and good looks to achieve his ends although he is also is capable of deep feeling and empathy.
This play is not a traditional fairytale and as such is not really suitable for small children.